The Art of Business Planning (vs. Strategic Planning)

the art of business planning

Efficiency is the name of the game at Agents of Efficiency (obviously) so we’re making it even more efficient for you to improve your business. Every week, we sort through all the boring stuff to bring you the best tips from the wide world of the web. For this week’s #2tips4tues, we’re talking about the art of business planning.

You might hear the terms “business plan” and “strategic plan” thrown around in similar situations. But there is a difference between the two. Business advice site, Bplans sums it up nicely:

“A business plan covers the ‘who’ and what’ of the business. The strategic plan gives us the ‘how’ and ‘when.’ ”

When to Use Business Planning

Essentially if you’re creating a business plan, you’re probably figuring out the basics of your operation – such as who is in charge, who is your target market, who is your competition, etc. Business planning helps you get clear about what you are offering and why, as well as what your customers need from you. Business plans guide the direction in which your business moves. Without this, any strategic planning will be too indirect and uncertain.

When to Use Strategic Planning

Once a solid foundation and identity is built through business planning, strategic planning swoops in to tackle the heavier tasks at hand. Strategic plans are created when you need to – learn what metrics to track, determine how to meet specific business goals, select a time period for a certain project, delegate tasks, etc. Thus your strategic plans should contain more action-oriented tasks to get you on track for measurable success.